Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Bean and Vegetable Sliders

During the three or so weeks that I wasn't cooking or baking, my family ate some weird things.  Sometimes we would just eat fast food, or nothing, or - worse - meat.  I felt like there was a terrible string of time when we ate salad, pilaf, and grilled chicken every night.  Mark was good enough to grill me some delicious portobellos for sandwiches, but I got really sick of eating mushrooms for dinner every night.  That's what finally prompted me to start cooking again: I was sick of eating mushrooms and watching my family eat chicken.

Look at all those veggies!
One such chicken-grilling night, I got my butt off the couch and grabbed my Meatless cookbook.  Kenz got me this for my birthday and it's amazing: Martha Stewart has finally created a whole cookbook of vegetarian recipes!  It's like a dream come true.  Anyway this was a recipe that jumped out at me immediately, because it's veggie burgers.  Bean and vegetable sliders, to be exact.  My family, being big burger fans, never understands my hatred for ground beef, so there were many nights that I had nothing to eat.  I thought it would be nice for us all to eat burgers together, even if mine were made of vegetables.  I also really liked that the recipe said that the flavors in the burger are borrowed from Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches.  And they had cilantro in them.  And they're held together simply by pureeing rice and beans.  How ingenious is that!?  No bread crumbs or eggs necessary.  

The recipe recommends serving them on whole what slider rolls; I wasn't able to find them, but let me tell you, they work amazingly well on snowflake rolls.  It also says to serve with lettuce, cilantro, sliced mango, onion, and a chile mayonnaise (which I obviously didn't even make due to my hatred of mayo).  I just ate them plain on the roll.  Kenz ate hers with cheese and raved about it.

That brings me to the results of these little sliders: they were a hit!  Kenzie loved them and has been begging me to make them again for her since (something that doesn't always happen with the meatless meals that I adore!).  Mark loved them too, and I ate them nonstop until they were gone.  These babies will be reappearing very soon.  They are so fresh, flavorful, and delicious.  The carrots and the broccoli and the ginger and the cilantro and the broccoli.... all delicious vegetables that you can actually taste.  This isn't like a veggie burger that is trying to taste like a hamburger or anything like that; you can taste each and every vegetable.  They aren't trying to hide.  And they are very filling; all those kidney beans beef them up pretty well.  In short, make these sliders.  Just trust me.


bean and vegetable sliders
from Meatless by Martha Stewart
233 calories per serving; 9.12 grams fat (1.3 g saturated fat); 2.82 mg cholesterol; 33.55 g carbohydrates; 6.41 g protein; 4.97 g fiber)


1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion, coarsely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/2 fresh chile, chopped (I left this out)
coarse salt
2 cups cooked kidney beans, drained and rinsed (or 1 can)
1 cup cooked basmati rice
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup finely chopped broccoli florets
2 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon canola oil
12 small, whole-wheat rolls, split
chile mayonnaise (see recipe below... I didn't use it)
assorted garnishes, such as lettuce, cilantro, sliced mango, and sliced onion


1) Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat.  Add onion, garlic and chile, and season with salt.  Cook until onion is soft, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.

2) Pulse beans in a food processor to form a coarse mash.  Pulse in rice.  Stir bean mixture in a bowl with carrot, broccoli, ginger, cilantro, and onion mixture.

3) Form into 12 1/2-inch thick patties.  Heat canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook patties in batches until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes per side.  Place patties on rolls, top with chile mayonnaise (if desired) and assorted garnishes, and serve.

Chile mayonnaise:
Stir together 3/4 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 teaspoon Asian chile sauce (such as sambal oelek), and dash of toasted-sesame oil in a bowl.  Refrigerate, covered, up to 1 week.  Makes 3/4 cup.

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